Breakfast Thieves

I’m a public school boy from the UK, I grew up in a place called Swanland and enjoy nothing more than a cup of tea before bed. A Sunday involves a trip to the South Melbourne market, having brunch with friends and hopping in bed by 8.30pm to read The Age.

You probably wouldn’t call me ‘Edgy.’

So trips up to Brunswick and Fitzroy are always good fun for me, my inner quirkiness comes out; I throw on my mint coloured shorts and really let the dogs out.

This weekend we met some friends at ‘Breakfast Thieves’ in Fitzroy, an old chocolate The Leprechaunfactory converted into an uber-trendy hide-out for brunch goers. The place is decked out nicely and has a funky atmosphere. After the usual long black (they use STREAT beans), we ordered. My friends went for ‘The Leprechaun,’ roughly translated as corn fritters on rosemary roasted carrot puree, avocado-yuzu mousse, pickled cucumber pomegranate salad & poached eggs. This looked delicious and by all accounts didn’t disappoint; for reference it’s generally frowned upon to lean over and dig in without an invitation.

The LegendOur other friend ordered ‘The Legend,’spicy baked eggs with spanish chorizo, mushrooms, green peas, feta, served with herbed garlic toast; from a man that loves his eggs he claimed these were the best baked eggs in Melbourne… the boldest claim since Bieber claimed he’d beat the f**k out of a reporter.

DSC_0456I opted for the Spanish Gypsy Dance; Crisp-polenta crusted poached eggs, Spanish morcilla (black pudding), peperonata, wild rocket on toasted gluten free toast with a side of potato rosti. These were incredible, I love black pudding at the best of times and generally dislike polenta at the best of times, I find it boring and more work than it’s worth but together the black pudding and eggs were just beautiful.

Barring a couple of waitressing mistakes which were apologised more than necessary for, I couldn’t fault the meal. Everything was cooked beautifully and I enjoyed every mouthful… although maybe the gluten free chocolate brownie to finish with wasn’t needed (oomph)!

Price – 8

Quality of food – 9

Atmosphere – 9

Breakfast Thieves on Urbanspoon

Josef Chromy

Firstly, a history lesson.

Czech Republic; a country I’ve visited a few times and I still know little about, 4 things I have learnt however include;

  1. Well known for inventing socks and sandals
  2. Cheaper beer than water
  3. Takes tram etiquette seriously
  4. Don’t mix 2 with 3

Little did I know that a chap called Josef fled war torn Czech Republic in the 50’s to set up camp in Tasmania and revolutionise local wine making. Described as a legend and a local hero, he has set up wineries such as Jansz, Bay of Fires and Tamar Ridge and it seems he loves a job with a view.

We sat at his flagship ”Josef Chromy” restaurant in the Tamar Valley and was greeted by a man in dungarees (Czech). He showed us the menu which boasted ” Freshly shucked oysters” and ”waiters well versed in the world of oysters,” they can bring you todays oyster news which I imagine to be a simple read.

Quail on Black Pudding
Quail on Black Pudding

The surroundings were beautiful and I started with the quail; roasted on a generous doorstep of black pudding, shaved apple and fennel salad; a starter that took me back to the UK eating game and black pudding in a country pub. Jax went for the buffalo mozzarella with tomato pesto and pear, again, a fantastic start with stunning presentation.

Lamb Cutlets
Lamb Cutlets

I backed this up with lamb so rare it took me back to a long-line of cavemen. This came with king brown mushrooms, asparagus and black olives. I loved it, cooked to perfection for me, however, I’m sure it would put off the faint hearted who aren’t cut out for working in an abattoir. Jax went for the braised beef check on polenta with salsa verde and balsamic; she loved it, a huge hunk of meat (like myself), that you could tear with a fork and the flavours were beautiful.

All in all, a top draw meal, with some great views and some authentic European service.

Price – 7

Quality – 8.5

Atmosphere – 8

Josef Chromy Cellar Door Cafe on Urbanspoon